SFA man makes bizarre appearance live on radio to discuss Celtic calls; what Madden has said

By John McGinley

December 4, 2021

Scottish FA referee chief Crawford Allan appeared live on BBC Radio Scotland this afternoon to discuss decisions in the match between Celtic and Hearts on Thursday night.

Celtic scored a goal through Kyogo, with one of the tightest onside/offside calls in recent memories sparking days of debate and overreaction from pundits and rival supporters.

The amount of pictures with dodgy squiggly red lines doing the rounds on social media is quite something to see.

Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images

Of course, BBC Radio Scotland decided to stoke the flames of controversy today, inviting Allan on the discuss the decisions. This is odd because Allan is hardly the most prominent voice in the media. In fact, a quick Google search will show you he has hardly commented in public at all so far this season.

Strange he would come on this week then.

On the offside call, he told the broadcaster: “It is very, very tight. I’ve said all along since I’ve been in this role that I’ll support referees when I can and I’ll come out and say when there is an error. On this one it’s absolutely understandable, from my point of view, at real speed that, as the ball comes across.

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“Kyogo, is he in front of the defender? Yeah, he probably is. You’ve then got to look at the angle of the ball and the speed of it at real time.”

Meanwhile, he asserts Bobby Madden got the decision to stop the game when Jota went down injured wrong also, stating: “I’ve spoken to Bobby about this, and he said that it was clear the player was in severe pain. It wasn’t just one where the player falls and screams. He said it was clear to him that an injury had occurred and he stopped the game because of that.

“Now that’s Bobby’s opinion in terms of how he does that. It’s in the laws of the game that a referee can stop the game, and it’s his opinion that a player is seriously injured. Is a hamstring a serious injury? Yeah, debatable.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

“Where I think there’s definitely the error from our point of view, and I’ve chatted to Bobby on this, was the restart. By the time Bobby had brought the whistle to his mouth, which was only less than half a second or so, Hearts then had possession of the ball. What should have been done is that Hearts should have had the drop ball and been allowed to retain the possession.”

So there you go, the Scottish FA are happy to admit public mistakes when they go for Celtic and say little when decisions go against us, such as the offside call that denied a Celtic goal at Tynecastle at the start of the season.

It’s a curious double standard that we’ll have to keep an eye on over the course of the season.

In other news, German Report: Celtic interested in January loan move for £8.1m attacking midfielder.